Friday, December 21, 2007

Mwiraria in Santa's list of naughty

This week, Daudi Mwiraria found out that his name was in Santa Britain’s list of naughty. The news was delivered as usual through newspapers with Britain denying any knowledge of the information saying, “We cannot comment on individuals or provide names.”

The Britons used the same line when they denied William Ruto and Musalia Mudavadi UK visas leading to the cancellation of the UK bonding meeting organized by Gilbert Deya. Information of their unfruitful trip to the UK High Commission offices in saw leaked to the newspapers.

The Standard reported:

“The dramatic last-minute collapse of the much-awaited ODM-Kenya London bonding mission has been linked to a visa hitch and the involvement of controversial preacher, Archbishop Gilbert Deya, The Standard reports.

The UK mission in Nairobi denied Eldoret North MP, Mr William Ruto — one of the front-runners for the party’s presidential ticket — a visa to enter Britain.

Sources at the UK mission said Ruto presented his visa request early this week, and the application was forwarded to the Home Office for clearance.

When The Standard sought an official comment, Deputy High Commissioner Ray Kyle, said: “I am sorry we do not comment on individual visa cases. That is our policy.”

Prime Minister in waiting William Ruto was no amused with the move by the UK. He accused the government of joining forces with the UK to break the party.

The reason for Ruto's visa hitch was that he stole Ngong Forest land and sold it to a parastatal raking in millions of sh.

Ruto was also mentioned in the Ndung'u Land Report for his role in massive land grabs. The Ndung'u report is wane of the many documents that Kenyans want implemented but ODM has promised to bury in a bottomless pit because it implicates top ODM leadership in corruption.

That is the reson why Ruto said, "My name and that of Raila are in the report. How can we implement it? We are not foolish to implement a report that was engineered by our enemies."

Exactly bwana Ruto. How do we expect ODM to bring the corrupt to justice when it is a club of the corrupt who have hired worldclass spinners to sanitize their names?
Mudavadi was not lucky to get a visa because as Raila said, "Mudavadi was the Finance minister in 1993. He first paid out the Sh5.8 billion in export compensation and then the Sh13.5 billion. I know what I am talking about. I stand for the truth and the VP and the President should come out and prove me wrong."

On hearing the news of Mwiraria and Biwott’s fate, William Ruto and Mudavadi must have thanked their God because their embarrassment came months ago. Kenyans are known for a short memory span so the duo stands a good chance of clinching their constituency seats. No politician wants embarrassing news a week to elections.

Raila Odinga too must be thanking his God because most Kenyans have forgotten that his designate VP and PM can’t travel to the UK and the USA.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Neo-Luddism under Raila Odinga

Politics is one of the professions where one has to put aside his education credentials and sense of self worth to survive. It is the only profession where Kariuki Chotara could floor Prof. Anyang’ Nyong’o in a debate on economics. It is for this reason that our academically enlightened politicians have to downgrade their abilities to fit in. That is exactly what Hon. Engineer Raila Odinga did to win the support of tea pickers in Rift Valley.

Raila Odinga promised that if elected, his government would safeguard the interests of the manual worker by preventing the use of technology. He pledged to use his first executive order to ban private tea estates from using machines to enhance productivity.

“Tea companies using plucking machines to deny Kenyans jobs will not use them at all starting January,” he said.

Raila Odinga is a mechanical engineer for crying out loud! He owns factories that use cutting edge technology to maximize profit by increasing productivity. Yet he is promising to use presidential powers to bar private businesses from utilizing technology!

Raila’s rhetoric is akin to that of the Ludite movement in Britain. This movement was against industrialization because they feared that workers will be replaced by machines. They were particularly against sewing machines. They wanted factories to use the good old thread and needle that had existed for many centuries. This movement destroyed property and led to a massive loss of lives. It is a shame that a man who wants to be president of Kenya has picked inspiration form the 19th centaury.

The Ludites will drop back to death if the saw the extensive use of robotics in the textile industry. The rudimentary sewing machines that they opposed in the early 18th century are no match for current technology. What is important to note is that humans still have jobs. In fact Kenyans are migrating to Britain to help take care of the excess jobs that may be available.

Raila is being the flip-flopper that he is. He tells people what they want to hear. Recently while addressing university students he promised to create quality jobs for them by creating a high tech Kenya. He accused the current administration of creating Jua Kali jobs to absorb jobless university graduates. But now he is promising to create an economy where technology is used sparingly to create more manual jobs!

I had an opportunity to listen to Raila’s brilliant ideas when he visited New Jersey early this year. Raila wondered why Kenya still lags behind yet countries like Korea and Malaysia that were in the same class as Kenya in the 60s are far ahead. Raila made that argument a key point in his vision for Kenya.

"The other country that fascinates me is South Korea and I believe the development models of these countries, can be replicated in Kenya," he explained.

Raila has asked this rhetorical question at every given opportunity.
The South Korea that fascinates Raila thrives on technology. The countries policies are not geared towards creating more menial jobs as Raila is suggesting. Korea has heavily invested in education and research. The country also promotes free enterprise unlike the command system that Raila wants to institute in Kenya. These policies have enhanced the productivity and attracted giants like Microsoft that recently opened a research and development center in Korea. This means Koreans will have more high quality jobs that pay well.

Economic Giants like the USA have very high productivity due to technology. This means the USA spends less to produce more. The USA also invests in high end jobs while outsourcing tedious menial work to countries like China, Kenya, and others. In China, they are trying to graduate from menial labor to high tech. This will lower pollution levels while creating quality jobs for the masses.

Raila should have no reason to fear that technology will deny Kenyans jobs. The machines will need to be fixed when they break down; be operated; be programmed etc. All this will require human labor. The graduates who are picking tea will instead utilize their skills to exploit the technological advances that may be brought in when the fiber optic link to the global telecoms network is complete. The fear for technology is unfounded and being used for political expedience.

Raila’s kaeni vile mulivyo politics will not add any value to our country. His populist policies will get in the way of development. Last but not least his anti-enterprise policies will send us back into the command economy that drove people into poverty. No president should force businesses to utilize 1st century technology in the name of creating menial jobs. That is how dictatorship creeps in.

By the way: in the spirit of Luddism, Raila’s Energem, Spectre International, etc should dismantle all their conveyer belts. Raila should then go to the street and hire all jobless people and ask them to replace the conveyor belts. I know he may not be willing to do that because it will lower productivity. But what if Kibaki used executive powers to tell Raila’s factories how they should be run? Will Raila be amused?

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Why Raila should promise to concede when he loses

As the debate on why Raila Odinga should concede when he loses the election heats up, we need to restudy the lessons from past elections in Africa.

Those who have been following the war in Congo DRC will know one Jean-Pierre Bemba. Bemba is a rebel leader causing trouble in Eastern Congo. He is married to Liliane Teixeira. Liliane is the daughter of Antonio “Tony” Texeira the CEO of Energem Resources. The company owns 55% shares in the Kisumu Molasses plant.

Jean-Pierre Bemba With his family

The war in Congo is fueled by her mineral and oil riches. Foreign companies interested in cheap minerals have heavily invested in war at the expense of poor Congolese. There are companies that are backing Kabila in exchange for mineral and oil concessions; some are backing Bemba and Kunda for the same; last we have those backing both sides with the aim of creating murky waters where their looting and human rights abuses will go unnoticed.

General Khaleb Akandwanaho AKA Gen. Salim Saleh –Museveni’s brother- was named by the UN as one of the key people involved in the looting of Congo.

The report names Saracen –a mercenary group- as one of the companies arming and training rebels in Congo. Saracen’s owners include Gen. Salim Saleh, Tony Texeira etc. Saracen provided security to Heritage Oil’s operations in Uganda. Heritage Oil was investigated for its role in the Eastern Congo conflict. Its employees have in the past been arrested for illegally entering Congo DRC.

Several sources have linked Heritage Oil, Branch Energy and Energem owners with mercenary activities. The firms have been criticized for their role in the trade of blood diamonds.
Is Energem (formerly DiamondWorks) funding the war in Congo? May be; may be not.

Did Energem fund Bemba’s bid for the big seat? May be; may be not.

What I can say it that it will take massive restraint for a father in-law not to help his son grab power. It is unimaginable that the Tony Texeira who was accused of shipping supplies to UNITA in clear violation of UN arms embargo can resist the allure of having a son in-law as the headmaster in a country that is chocking from massive reserves of minerals and oil.,,236080,00.html

In Kenya, Raila Odinga is been operating on an endless supply of money. Some have attributed this to the successful $20 dollar dinners that Raila’s supporters organized in the USA and Europe. Others have pointed out the enormous political investment by companies that were running the modern scramble for Africa. What about a combination of the two?

Raila Odinga is a shareholder in Energem -the firm that co-owns the Kisumu Molasses Plant. Until recently his buddy Tony Texeira was heading the Kisumu plant. I am sure that his friend Tony will be happy to have him as a president. Has he given him a few bucks to run the campaign?

A number of mineral and energy resource companies have in the past invested in political power. The most recent team of power venture capitalists were convicted in the failed coup in Equatorial Guinea. The main investors according to a list that Simon Mann tired to smuggle out of prison were Mark Thatcher, David Hart, Ely Calil, Greg Wales, among others. The team of investors wanted their man on the throne so that they could benefit from oil revenue generated in EQ.

Raila Odinga has been making several trips to South Africa. This is kind of strange! The people who are going to vote in this election are Kenyans based in Kenya. At this eleventh hour, every minute spent on the ground meeting the voters is very important. I will be happy to hear from Raila and his supporters why South Africans are all of a sudden more important that the voters in Kenya. To add to the mystery, Raila never met any Kenyan groups during his recent visit to South Africa.

Plan B in the Making!

If Raila has a plan B like his buddy Jean-Pierre Bemba, then South Africa is the place to be. The plane carrying mercenaries to Equatorial Guinea departed from South Africa. Mercenary groups like Executive Outcomes, Sandline etc operate from South Africa. When Bemba was cornered by DRC forces he ran to the RSA embassy that then shipped him out of Congo.

Raila Odinga is making an environment conducive for his plan B. The master strategist in him started writing this script way back. Remember the 2006 campaign ads on DSTV? Let me quote the Standard:

Just before the World Cup kicked off early that month, Raila was abroad, to set the stage for his presidential campaign advert on DSTV.

When the tournament began, Raila came on to the screen via DSTV, to announce he would be running for Kenya’s Presidency this year.

In the advert, the Lang’ata MP introduced himself as a Pan Africanist and wished African teams in the World Cup success.

Interesting! Why would a Kenyan politician blast his ads across the world claiming to be a Pan Africanist? If you are Raila Odinga and you understand that opinion leaders in Africa believe in Pan Africanism, you must understand the importance of identifying with them. I have never heard Raila push for Pan Africanism beyond calling himself a Pan African.

The label and the fame come in handy if you lose the election. You can justify anything you do in the name of rigging. You will find support in media houses across the continent manned by people who grew up in the 60s and 70s when Pan-Africanism was fad.

If you are Raila, you will cry wolf claiming the government is to rig you. You will spread propaganda that they are printing ballots to rig the elections. If you have Dick Morris on your side he will advice you to print ballots, circulate them and come out saying that your prophesy has been fulfilled. The problem is that the gap between the propaganda of ballots being printed and releasing the fake ballots will be too long. This has given PNU a chance to open its eyes wider.

Raila Odinga inspecting a guard of honor mounted by his youths in Nakuru

Raila Odinga also has an active youth group that dons military uniforms. This is a break from the T-Shirts that are used widely in political campaigns. Why one needs a para-military unit to support his campaigns is simply stupid. This is one way of glorifying militancy and tilling the ground in preparation for sowing war!

Peace supersedes personal ambition

We cannot say that Kenya is 100% peaceful. We have our own problems but we are not ready to kill our neighbors in the name of helping Raila Odinga achieve his ambition to be president. In 1982, the Kenyan Army successfully squashed the mutiny that Raila is proud of and has justified on several occasions.

Our Army has been apolitical and operates as a professional institution. It has let politicians fight each other without any interference. In fact it doesn’t occur to most people that Kenya has an army. This is a quality that we should not take for granted.

The army should brush aside those promoting tribalism. Our officers serve the citizens of Kenya and not any tribe or tribal king. We hope that it remains to be the case after the election. I have faith that the seeds of division will land on barren ground.

It is important that Raila comes out with the promise of respecting the voter’s verdict. Storming statehouse, parliament etc should not be an option. He has made such threats in the past but we must make him realize that his ambition should not jeopardize out existence as a nation.

Other Sources:[5]%20Sept%202007.pdf

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Raila’s economy doesn’t add up

They say facts should not get in the way of juicy political promises. That seems to be the case with Raila Odinga’s economic model for Kenya. He has promised to use 10% of the GDP on infrastructure, send 60% of the national revenue back to the Majimbo (Provinces) and increase government expenditure on social programs. On top of that he will not increase taxes and will pay government employees more. All this seems to work in the political world but cannot work in a real economy.

GDP is simply a sum of Consumer spending, Government expenditure, Investment, and Net Export. Kenya’s GDP is about $41.4 billion with government expenditure standing at about $5 billion. That makes government spending about 12% of the GDP. From this 12%, Raila wants to spend 10% on infrastructure. That leaves Raila with 2% of the GDP to spend on Health, Education, National Defense, and so on. I wonder how Raila will manage to split this 2% between free secondary education, universal healthcare and other social programs.

We must also ask ourselves how Raila’s ambitious economy will work when the central government will be left with 40% of national revenue after sending 60% to regional governments. The Raila administration will have to work with about $1.7 billion since our national revenue stands at about $4.7 billion.

In this season of promises, we have to take promises with a pinch of salt. It is imperative that we go through these promises with a fine comb check for practicality. It is vital that our leaders strike a balance between populism and pragmatism. I can promise you the moon; the problem is how I deliver it.

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Why ODM's Majimbo Propaganda Backfired

Here is my shorter version of the rant below as edited by the Standard

And here is the full version:

Raila Odinga has historically never favored Majimbo. His father –Jaramogi Oginga Odinga- was opposed to Majimbo. Until 3 weeks ago, Majimbo was a word that never featured in ODM's vision for Kenya. Why ODM chose to employ the Majimbo government in their campaign is puzzling to many. One will not be wrong to conclude that Majimbo is ODM's Division for Kenya. Recent Steadman polls show that a significant majority of Kenyans oppose Majimbo.

Those who have keenly watched the ODM campaign unfold will agree with me that everything ODM has said has ended up with Kikuyus shortchanging other Kenyans. ODM has successfully created an image of a Central Province where residents are swimming in money; where roads and footpaths are paved; where the local dispensary is more equipped that Kenyatta National Hospital and bla bla bla. That is far from the truth.

ODM's "wining" line has been turning the rest of Kenyans against the Kikuyu community.

ODM's opinion on economic growth is that only Central Kenya is benefiting while the rest of the country languishes in poverty. ODM has completely divorced poverty from the disparities in income between the very rich Kenyans and the very poor Kenyans. The reality is that it is the rich employers like Raila Odinga and others who are raking in tons of money while their employees still earn a minimum wage. Our ODM MPs have nothing to say about their close to sh 1million a month pay (nearly tax-free) they earn in comparison to the sh 4,000 a month minimum wage "enjoyed" by a majority of Kenyans.

After successfully "identifying" the Kikuyu community the "root cause of poverty in Kenya," the ODM propaganda team came up with Majimbo as the solution. Majimbo was supposed to bring in 2 major gains to ODM. First, it could have isolated the Kikuyu further and second, it could have locked in the Rift Valley and Coast Province votes. The problem is that the ODM propaganda team was in the 1980s and 1962 mode.

They picked the term Majimbo to further their segregationist agenda because the term is akin to what the swastika means to the Jews. Majimbo as we know it in Kenya has been used as an excuse to drive out "foreigners" from their land.

ODM's linkman in Southern Rift, William Ole Ntimama is one of the well known proponents of Majimbo. He is well known for his role in tribal clashes and fiery segregationist statements.

Here is a quote from the Nation:

But Mr Nitmama admitted that he insulted the Kikuyu on the floor of Parliament after the Finance magazine wrote a derogatory story on the Maasai, saying that they would be obliterated from the face of the earth.

He said that to even the scores, he stood up in Parliament and described the Kikuyu as a filthy community with protruding stomachs, red teeth, and jigger infested feet.

"I told them that because of their arrogance, they will be cut down to size as it happened to the Ibos of Nigeria."

The Nation (Thursday, April 15, 1999)

It is hard for Kenyans to trust people like Ntimama's new version of Majimbo as preached in the ODM gospel. In 1992 and 1997, Ntimama and others led a Majimbo campaign in Rift Valley and Coast province. These campaigns were followed by tribal clashes. The same calls are being made and evictions have started in Molo and Sondu. Communities like Kisiis and Kikuyus who are viewed as being against Majimbo are now being evicted for their land.

Human Rights Watch:

Akiwumi Ethnic Clashes Inquiry

It is a shame that leaders who should know better are deliberately and irresponsibly using populism to push for an idea that has failed in the past because of the hate and violence that is associated with it.

Polls have shown that Kenyans don't support the ethnic segregation suggested by Majimboists. Constituency Development Fund (CDF) and Local Authorities Transfer Fund (LATF) have been vehicles of economic devolution and should be strengthened and closely monitored to make sure that the money reaching the village is used to improve living standards.

Majimbo as a Trojan horse for tribal segregation is not the way to go. Kenya belong to all of us; every single inch of it.


I will like to dedicate this poem to a friend of mine who is a high ranking campaigner of ODM. His family experienced clashes in 1992 and 1998 because they were "foreigners" in Rift Valley. Today he sees nothing wrong in what is going on in Molo and Sondu because his tribe is in good political books with the tribalists fanning the tribal flames.

First They Came for the Jews

First they came for the Jews
and I did not speak out
because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for the Communists
and I did not speak out
because I was not a Communist.
Then they came for the trade unionists
and I did not speak out
because I was not a trade unionist.
Then they came for me
and there was no one leftto speak out for me.
Pastor Martin Niemöller

I hope the poem will make sense to my friend. Some issues should transcend who we support in politics.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Raila Odinga can be compared to Jesus?

Raila: "When you see Raila, you see a leader who stands for the truth. I can be compared to Mandela, Galileo Galilei and Jesus.”

When I saw Mandela I said maybe. Galileo; I opened my eyes wider. Jesus! No! The few people that I have seen call themselves Jesus were on Prozac or were admitted to some mental facility for treatment. It is shocking for a future president to be arrogant enough to compare himself with God.

When Jesus was on earth, He did not brag about being the son of God. He never rode on the chariots –the era’s Hummers. The bible told us that Jesus rode a donkey to Jerusalem. As God, Jesus had the powers to say let there be white horses and a golden chariot but he did not. It is ridiculous for a man rides around in a Hummer and leaves people chanting ere mtoka to compare himself to Jesus.

Jesus died on the cross for our sins. He made the ultimate sacrifice. That cannot be said of Raila son of Odinga. The man who brags of leading the 82 coup attempt fought to save his skin as sons of peasants were led to the gallows. Raila didn’t offer to die for Ochuka, Oriwa Hongo, Odhiambo Ndege, Injeni Njeremani, Fenwicks Obuon, Ogidi Obuon, Mirasi Odawa, Odira Ojode, Pancras Oteyo, Adel Omolo, Odemba Otieno or Akoth Otila. Today he is a billionaire enjoying life while the families of his buddies wallow in poverty. A Jesus?

Jesus was never power hungry. That cannot be said of Raila who has gone as far as shedding tears as he sees his ambition disappear into thin air. This is a man who has even sworn with a bible in the air that his arch-rival made power promises that he did not deliver.

Lang’ata MP Raila Odinga lifts the Bible at Boito PAC Church,
Kericho District, and swears that in 2002, President Kibaki
pledged to govern for only one term.

Jesus was never violent. He was a democrat who believed in free will. Not once did He order his disciples to stone those opposed to His teachings. The same cannot be said of Raila who is known to be the de facto leader. Storming and stoning are words that are always on his lips. Anybody who dares oppose the Dear Leader is branded a tribalist and orders of his stoning are issued. The honorable MP even throws punches in Bunge when he is lost of words to support his stand. If Raila is like Jesus them Gumo can say the same on himself.

Brutal: Armed youths beat up an innocent bystander outside Parliament yesterday. The men circled are said to be aides of NDP leader Mr. Raila Odinga.

The sage said: Chema cha jiuza, kibaya cha jitembeza. Raila should not go around blowing his own trumpet. Mandela has never compaired himself to Jesus or Martin Luther King Jnr. He is Mandela; a brand of it’s own. Galileo never called himself Aristotle. Let Raila be Raila. He cannot go around bragging that he is in a class of Jesus for he is not.

11th LDP NEB meeting held on July 1, 2003

The Following is an article published by the Dec 22, 2003 edition of the Standard.

11th LDP NEB meeting held on July 1, 2003

A part from the official meeting held, a brainstorm was conducted on a brief research paper presented by the chairman. It touched on how the LDP should be strengthened. It was recommended from the debate:

1. LDP must continuously show it is the one pushing for a constitutional reform while NAK is against constitutional reform as Kanu was depicted in the past.

2. LDP must explore all avenues of fruitful engagement with Kanu. Efforts must be made to reverse the nasty merger experience between Kanu and NDP, LDP should help Kanu look good among members of the public.

3. LDP must be shown as pro-people and for reforms whereas the government must be painted as anti-change.

4. The government must be isolated and shown as a Mt. Kenya backed government without national appeal.

5. We must continue to hold the government responsible for breaching the MoU so that Kenyans can see it as unfair and insensitive.

6. We must promote the view that government ministers are corrupt so that the government has no moral authority to pursue corruption and it looks bad in the eyes of the international community.

7. We must continuously paint the government and Narc-Nak as the same as the former Kanu.

8. LDP must seriously engage the media-owners — editors and journalists— to discredit the government, NAK and the people who are pro-establishment.

9. Every opportunity must be taken to destabilise the government in a way, which is not traceable to us.

10. Friendship of the security forces and the entire civil service should be sought. We must resist a civil service shake-up.

11. Finances must be raised including from foreign friends and domestic friends. Ministries we control should assist our friends to make money legally some of which can be contributed to the LDP kitty.

12. LDP must capture all influential civil society including COTU, Maendeleo, human rights groups etc.

13. Ministries we control should assist our MPs and regions where we are recruiting.

14. We must treat Bomas delegates well at all times. They are very important for the constitutional reform process.

15. We must demonstrate always that with our friends in Kanu we control parliament.

16. LDP can take a chunk of Kanu and most of Narc with time so that in 2007 we are independent and in control.

17. LDP must recruit nationally so that we have national elections. We should only accept Narc elections if we are sure we’ll take over Narc. Otherwise we must now not accept the convening of a summit we can’t control.

18. We must continuously destabilise NAK.

19. A strategy for 2007 elections must be put in place. Our research think tank should be tasked to prepare a confidential road map.

20. We must not relent on executive prime minister as well as a president who had limited powers. The vice president position should be deputy president. Three deputy prime ministers should exist. These positions will be used to a formidable coalition of LDP, friendly Kanu etc. We must seek new friends all the time.

21. We must invest in the underground media.

22. We must show government cannot perform; only LDP ministers can.

23. We must be careful that LDP elections do not create problems for us.

24. The credibility of all those who oppose our agenda must be destroyed.

25. We must also continuously woo NAK affiliate parties and personalities.

26. We must always create the impression that LDP is a big movement, which is popular.

27. Let’s get NAK affiliates to fight each other whenever it is possible.

28. We must dialogue with the international community to show them NAK has betrayed us and democracy. We must ask them to engage the government in a cautious way.

29. We must capture the local government movement.

30. If possible some strategic government motions should be defeated. A vote of no confidence should be an option.

31. Weak LDP legislators should be helped.

32. We must plant competitors to destabilise all those MPs and councillors who oppose us.

33. We must take Bomas very seriously. Attendance is a must.

34. LDP must continue to own and popularise the LDP-harambee-rainbow clarion call.

35. If we cant have Narc we must destroy it by 2006 or early 2007. Let it be a nominal party.

36. We must maintain an efficient secretariat and infiltrate Mwenge House.

37. LDP ministers and assistant ministers must act like they are the government.

38. LDP functionaries must always collect intelligence, which must be shared.

39. LDP must work tirelessly to have the youth, women and Muslims on its side.

40. Bonding activities for LDP must be organised continuously.

41. The research/think-tank group should be strengthened. LDP intellectuals who work abroad should be mobilised to contribute to the future of LDP.

42. We must continue to point our Narc election officials and Narc Mwenge House functionaries have not been paid since December 2002.

43. A sub-committee to vet all government appointments should be established. All past political appointments should be scrutinised.

44. The issue of the MoU between the Kodhek group and LDP should be settled.

45. Strategic and innovative ways of having political rallies and civic education meetings to be explored in Mombasa, Kericho, Eldoret, Kakamega, Kisumu, Garissa, Nairobi and other places in our country. The main agenda should be constitutional review.

46. LDP must at all times support Yash Pal Ghai and show that the government does not and wants to scuttle the review process.

47. LDP civic support has been analysed and will be available to all members.

48. We must try to compromise secretaries and other workers in the offices of those close to the establishment.

49. LDP must stay in government for as long as possible. This is strategic in many ways

50. We must develop relations with other political parties abroad.

This information should only be shared on a strictly confidential basis with LDP officials including Hon. Kamotho, Hon. W. Ole Ntimama, Hon Job Omino and LDP summit members. This LDP Roadmap to 2007 will be subject to review and refinement from time to time.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Political capital from bashing Kenya?

Imagine yourself as a presidential candidate in the Kenyan general elections. You are invited as a keynote speaker in a meeting comprising of university students -drawn from all Tanzanian universities- at the University of Dar es Salaam. What will you tell these students? Will you use the forum to campaign for presidency?

During Barrack Obama’s tour in Africa, we saw him market the USA as a beacon of hope. He called on African government to develop a close relationship with the USA for the benefit of citizens of both continents. He also took a HIV test in Kenya to motivate Kenyans to participate in testing and prevention of AIDs. Please note that at the time, Mr. Obama had shown interest in running for office.

Back in Kenya, the countries interests take the back burner as personal ambitions are put on overdrive. This was clearly evident when Raila Odinga took his campaign overseas with claims that the Kenyan economy and the NSE thrives on drug money. Some may argue that he had every right to make such ridiculous claims because he was addressing a crowd comprising mainly of Kenyan citizens. But what do you make of his keynote speech to over 10,000 East African Community university students in Kampala? In the speech Raila lampooned president Mwai Kibaki telling him that he must meet all ODM-K demands for “minimum reforms” or else… He read ODM’s demands to these students even when it is clear that they cannot vote in Kenyan elections.

I think there are many issues affecting the three East African Community members that Raila could have talked about instead of using the inter-university forum to advance his campaign for presidency. Chief among these are the issues of the EAC economy and the political integration of these three countries.

In the realization that these students will be shaping up future policies that affect the EAC, Raila should have raised the issue of cross border trade, work permits, and development of infrastructure to ease movement within the region. As of today, Tanzania remains the only country in the region where Kenyans have to go through red-tape regulations to get work permits.

In march last year, Kenyan journalist were arrested in Tanzania and deported. Kenyan businesses in Tanzania have also had their employees deported as Tanzanians claim that Kenyans are too aggressive in business. Raila should have used this forum to reassure Tanzanians of our commitment to make the EAC a success by encouraging cross border employment and investment. Instead, Mr. Odinga chose to embrace party activism as he threw statesmanship out of the window.

The inter-university forum would have been the best venue to challenge students to think about how best the region can utilize resources from this lake. In the past we have seen Ugandan forces crossing into Kenyan waters to arrest fishermen. This issue touches the interests of Mfangano Islands residents who depend on fishing.

It is a shame that our leaders are behaving akin to the woman who requested King Solomon to split up the baby so that each can have a share. These leaders want to be president but they use foreign countries as platforms ridicule their motherland and spread bold lies. Will they have an intact country to govern if their preoccupation is selling Kenya as a dead horse?